Ukrainian leader Oleksander Turchinov has warned pro-Russian eastern regions they would be stepping into the abyss if they vote for self-rule on Sunday, in a referendum that has raised Western fears of a slide to full civil war.
The UK has joined international condemnation of rebels in two eastern Ukrainian regions as they stage sovereignty referendums.
He said secession from Ukraine "would be a step into the abyss for these regions... Those who stand for self-rule do not understand that it would mean complete destruction of the economy, social programs and life in general for the majority of the population."
European Union foreign ministers added 13 people to their visa ban and asset freeze list over Ukraine's crisis.
Well that’s the voting over, and no surprises so far. A ‘Yes’ vote claimed to be 89% in Donetsk, and suddenly Ukraine is no more.
Nearly 90 percent of voters in eastern Ukrainian region voted for self-rule, the head of the separatist election commission said.